tv To Be Announced CNN August 18, 2013 5:00pm-6:01pm PDT
there's any right to expect. when all is said and done, i wanted to go to the congo, and i did. >> oklahoma city lies at the geographic heart of the country. it's probably the last place you would pick to be targeted for destruction. then came the morning of april 19th, 1995. >> good morning. in this proceeding with regard to application 95-501 for a railroad permit. we'll present evidence, hear evidence from the applicant with
regard to this proceeding. there are four elements that i have to receive information regarding. >> fire on the ground. we'll have the background so i can get a better view of it. >> holy cow. about one-third of the building has been blown away. >> it was staggering the potential casualties and deaths. >> i remember saying, god, i don't want to die today. >> it was terrifying attack. >> i was so hoping that it was not an american. >> that left an entire nation disillusioned. >> it was an act of cowardess. it was a game changer. >> it remains the worst act of domestic terrorism in american history perpetrated by one of our own. a decorated army veteran of the first gulf war.
with worldwide implications and enormous consequences. >> the bombing has sent shock waves through washington. >> there is increased security nationwide. >> the pentagon has activated an emergency disaster response. >> it could be a contractor. it could be a wacko. it could be a professional. you don't have to be a rocket scientist to create this kind of bomb. >> as the smoke began to clear, two questions reverb rated across the country. who and why? the answers would be shocking. the man behind the devastation was an american. his name? timothy mcveigh. >> tim mcveigh was one of ours. he was a war hero. he grew up in the suburbs of buffalo, and we needed to know. there's a sense, an obligation to fine out who this man was. >> timothy mcveigh was born on april 23rd, 1968, in the town of lockport in upstate new york. by all accounts, he had an ordinary childhood and
adolescence. >> we were never told anything that would have give you warning that he was going do something like this. in fact, as a teenager, he was the young man that people in the neighborhood would choose to babysit their kids. >> he was a good student. he was bright. above average intelligence. sometimes you look at the history of severe criminal conduct and there is childhood abuse or abandonment, and you can see how someone developed into it. nothing striking in mcveigh's background. >> but the young mcveigh did have a dark side. while still a teenager, he had discovered the turner diaries, a venomously racist novel about an armed insurrection led by white supremacists against an oppressive federal government. >> it described a truck bombing of fbi headquarters in washington d.c. shortly after 9:00 in the morning, sounding very similar to what took place
in oklahoma city on april 19th, 1995. >> if timothy mcveigh was looking to make a statement that he had succeeded in the worst way possible. >> debris, blast. it looks as though emergency crews are on the scene. >> the incredible explosion that ripped apart the nine-story alfred p. murrah federal building hit with nearly two tons of tnt. the air inside was whipped into a churning tornado of glass shards and choking black smoke. one floor pancaked to the next crushing and trapping men, women, and children below. >> the roof has collapsed. >> the second floor held a daycare center. the lucky ones staggered into the street. some barely alive.
>> i saw a yellow flash, and then they're going pitch black. >> the force of the blast bent me over my desk. >> the believe just fell in on us. everyone had back injuries and head injuries, neck, bleeding, glass. >> i felt pain on my left side of my face and popping noises, and it was the glass shards. >> it just kept falling. it was a horrible noise, horrible noise. >> i remember saying, fwod, wropt to die today, and i don't
want to die in this building. if it's all right with you, i would like to die later. >> felt like an earthquake. something actually shook our television station. that's five miles away. >> in those first frantic minutes no one was quite sure what had caused the explosion. >> initially we thought it might have been a gas explosion because we had to evacuate the office two, three weeks earlier because there was a gas leak downtown. >> i thought that a war had started. i thought that oklahoma city had been bombed, that we had been attacked by another country. >> i thought that the explosion was an atomic blast from tinker air force base. >> i was trying to make sense out of it. i did not think it was a bomb. >> they have dog teams here
searching for survivors and for bodies. >> scores of people have been killed outright and hundreds more injured. the blast radius encompasses a 16 block area, but the murrah building is ground zero. >> bureau of alcohol, tobacco, and firearms was head quartered there. some of its members are still missing. social security was located there. a child care center was located there. initial estimates that were coming in was that there had been perhaps 1,000 people.
it was staggering the potential casualties and deaths that could have been caused by this bombing. everything around the building was still on fire. things across the street were on fire. the treedz that were there were on fire. >> people at this hour are literally trapped in the alfred murrah building in downtown oklahoma city. >> everybody, fwet back. >> they have found -- >> when first responders -- the rescue operation is suspended. a four-block area is quickly evacuated. it is thankfully a false alarm. precious moments have been lost. by the time the rescue resumes, investigators have swarmed the area. >> first question has been
answered. was this a freak accidental explosion of some kind? was it intentional? >> it is quickly determined that the explosion at the federal building was caused by a truck bomb. >> there are certain things you can look for, particularly in the case of a large vehicle bomb. there was roughly a 32 foot crater in the street. it appeared to be just about dead center of the block. >> then investigators get their first big break. >> he came from the truck bomb and has landed around 200 yards from the bomb site. >> i heard something coming through the air, and i looked up. you see this big object coming straight towards us, and when it hit the car, it knocked it back to these other sets of doors back here, and i look in front of my car, and there was an axle in there, and i told my wife, it's a car bomb. >> early indications are the bomb was a half ton homemade bomb that was made of common fertilizer and fuel oil. >> fortunately, the axle housing contains the truck's confidential vehicle identification number. >> using that number we are able to trace the people sxifts identify it as a ford motor product that had been made for
ryder rental company. >> the rider company informs the fbi that this particular truck had been assigned to elliott's body shop in junction city, kansas. more than 270 miles north of oklahoma city. fbi agents discover that the truck had been rented two days earlier. >> the rental documents themselves showed that it had been rented by a robert bob cling. we had no idea whether he was a real person. >> an employee provides a detailed description of kling and another man he believed was with him. who was robert kling, and why he had just murdered nearly 200 men, women, and children? within 24 hours the nation would learn the stunning truth. >> let there be no room for doubt. we will find the people who did we will find the people who did this. the proud lishments of our students and alumni. people like, maria salazar,
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overwhelming. >> 168 people killed. among the dead are 19 children. >> there's very little home for those left in that building. >> the oklahoma city bombing will go down in history as one of the elemental moments that people will remember where they were at the time. >> this is a grezly, meticulous search effort to find bodies. >>. >> 90 minutes from the blast -- >> it was attorney general think mcveigh. >> when he got out, it was ae man that had a military type appearance, had a short haircut. he also had a light windbreaker jacket on, and it was zipped up just slightly, but as he was removing his bill fold from his pocket that, jacket tightened
up. i could see a bulge under his left arm that appeared to me to be a weapon, and i grabbed the bulge on the outside of his jacket and instructed him to get his hands up, turn around. at the same time i was drawing my weapon and stuck it to the back of his head. he said my weapon is loaded. i nudged him a little bit with the barrel of my weapon. i said, well, so is mine. >> hanger arrests mcveigh for carrying a consealed weapon. never imaging that his prisoner is the oklahoma city bomber. initially the name mcveigh means nothing to bombing investigators. they're looking for robert kling, the man who rented the ryder truck in junction city, kansas. >> it seems hard to believe that all this destruction is the work of only two men. >> the next day armed with sketches of kling and a suspected companion, law
enforcement officers canvas the entire area. >> one agent was assigned the dream land motel, and when he walked in and talked to the owner of that particular place, and he asked her, has anyone been in here that had a ryder truck with him? she said actually there was here recently. so the agent decided show her the artist conception. she looked at it and said that really looks like the fellow who rented room 25. >> it read the name of tim mcveigh. the ryder rental truck had been rented in the name of robert kling. there was some question as to which was the true name, if either were a true name. >> so we do a record search through our national crime information center to see if any timothy mcveighs had been arrested anywhere in the united states recently. to our surprise we learned that timothy mcveigh has been arrested in noble county, which is about 75 miles north of
oklahoma city and was arrested the morning of the bombing. it turned out he was getting ready to be released on bail. we put a hold on him until our intufrz could get there to interview him. >> was it the same timothy mcveigh at the dreamland motel? at this point we don't necessarily know. our agents tried to intufr timothy mcveigh. when they approached him, they asked him do you know what we're here for? he said probably about that oklahoma city thing. he gave us his name, rank, and serial number and refused to talk to us any more. >> in washington attorney general janet reno announces the arrest. >> i am pleased to announce that one of the people responseible for wednesday's terrible attack has been arrested. i remind everyone that john doe number two remains at large. >> when mcveigh is transported
to oklahoma city. he is met by an angry crowd and screams of baby killer. >> we're hoping that it wasn't an american. >> it's hard to believe americans blowing up americans. >> it just boggled my mind. >> what tim mcveigh did was the worst act of domestic terrorism in american history. the entire country was shocked and riveted that somebody could come from white bread suburbia and commit such a hell ashs act. >> it's strange to think that she'll grow up in this is scary.
>> investigators are certain that mcveigh is the john doe number one in the police sketch, but they still have not identified john doe number two. >> john doe number two. if the fbi can't find him, does he exist? >> there is no place on earth where you will be safe. >> the michigan address on mcveigh's driver's license is
the home of a man named james nichols. it's a critical development. nichols brother, terry, has been close friends with mcveigh since they searched together in the army. like mcveigh, nichols is known to harbor anti-government views. >> terry nichols, just four days before the blast, took out a new insurance policy on his pickup truck. >> an arrest warrant is quickly issued. later the same day nichols turns himself in. >> now it's become a recovery effort. >> authorities in the building behind me are coming across more bodies. >> most of the survivors wanted to go to most of the funerals, and that's tough going to 16 funerals. let me tell you. >> we needed to do -- police believed he is still in the building. >> finally on may 5th, 1995, with three victims still buried in the rubble, the search comes to an end. >> this was not two or three people from this city or two or three people from that city. this was oklahoma city. the terrorism was directed at the city. the terrorism was directed at its people. it was the sort of heart of oklahoma city. [ male announcer ] oh, dan, checking out of the doubletree isn't the end.
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>> on april 21st, 1995, timothy mcveigh is arrested and charged with the bombing of the alfred p. murrah federal building in oklahoma city. oklahoma attorney steven jones is appointed as mcveigh's public defender. jones immediately rejects the possibility of an insanity defense. >> timothy mcveigh was not insane. he was rationale. he was interviewed by several psychologists and psychiatrists, and he didn't have any obvious mental disorder or emotional disorder. the question comes up why is he going to construct a bomb that will kill hundreds of people. >> i don't want people to misread, but i was surprised how
likable he appeared to be for a man who had killed 168 people in cold blood. >> reporters spent more than 70 hours interviewing mcveigh trying to gain ensight into what led hem to be a domestic terrorist. by all accounts an early turning point for mcveigh comes in 1988 when he joins the army. while stationed at fort benning, georgia, they bond with their platoon leader terry nichols over a shared distrust of the federal government. >> they took an eninstant liking to him, and he loved hearing nichols spout off about his theories about government and mrekz. >> mcveigh searches during operation desert storm, and he is awarded a bronze star for valor. during his service he kills at least two enemy combatants. >> one thing he did write me
about was in saudi arabia when he was in the war he was a gunner on leave, and he told me one time he was shooting out, and a guy came out and was waving his hands trying to surrender, and mcveigh started shooting at him. he said it was 1100 meters, and the first round hit the guy in the head. >> after returning from the war, mcveigh hoped to join the special forces, but quits because he is physically unprepared. >> one of mcveigh's goals early on in entering the army was special forces. when it didn't work out for him with the special forces, he lost his focus. >> mcveigh is discharged from the army on december 31st, 1991. he begins to drift around the country taking odd jobs and attending gun shows. >> he was totally against any
kind of gun control. he was totally in favor of government leaving people alone, letting them do what they want to do. >> his trust of a large central government goes back to our independence. it's written into our constitution. the problem is when it's taken to its extremes, and timothy mcveigh was the extreme of that ideology. >> but he doesn't seem to be destructive until two tragic events in the early 1990s insight mcveigh to embrace violence. in august 1992 deputy u.s. marshals and fbi agents are sflovld a deadly confrontation in northern idaho with an alleged white supremacist named randy weaver. he is suspected of selling illegal firearms. during an 11-day standoff weaver's son, his wife, and a
deputy u.s. marshal are killed. then february 28th, 1993, following a gun battle between the atf and members of a religious group called the branch davidians, federal agents lay siege to the group's compound near waco, texas. a suspected cache of illegal weapons is at the center of the controversy. >> mcveigh was just absolutely in a rage over both of those incidents, but the one thing that pushed him over the edge and turned hem into a terrorist of the waco incident. >> at one point mcveigh drives to waco to observe the siege. >> he went and parked his car nearby, and he was selling anti-government pamphlets giving interviews to at least one reporter back then about how much he distrusted the u.s. government. >> during an assault by the fbi on april 19th, the branch davidian compound is engulfed by
fire. at least 76 men, women, and children die during the inferno. >> mcveigh told us that he was convinced that the u.s. government purposefully murdered women and children at the waco compound. it was all part of an effort to destroy gun rights in america. >> the triggering moment was waco. he was there, and he decided that the government had gone too far. >> he was going to start his own war. >> and the first strike would be aimed at the heart of the country. for mcveigh and his army buddy
terry nichols, targeting a government building was dramatic and symbolic. they chose the alfred p. murrah federal building in downtown oklahoma city, which housed 14 federal agencies, including the secret service, the dea, and the atf. >> mcveigh believed that his bombing would be the opening salvo in a conflict against an illegitimate federal government that needed to be brought down to its knees. when you vote for flo, we'll have discounts. ice-cream discounts. multi-cookie discounts. pizza loyalty discounts! [ kids chanting "flo!" ] i also have some great ideas on car insurance. [ silence ] finding you discounts since back in the day. call or click today. i like her. see lioutdoors, or in.ight. transitions® lenses automatically filter just the right amount of light. so you see everything the way it's meant to be seen.
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>> on august 10th, 11 criminal counts, including eight counts of murder. that figure is based upon the number of federal law enforcement officials killed in the blast. on april 24th, 1997, two years after the bombing mcveigh's trial begins in denver, colorado. the prosecution presents first and lays out a timeline of events that led up to the bombing. by mid 1994 mcveigh and nichols, along with their army friend michael fortier were ready to put their plan into action. mcveigh decided the most effective weapon would be a truck bomb. in september 1994 mcveigh and
nichols begin stockpiling ammonium night rate, a fertilizer often used in truck bombs. >> it's cheap, readily available, and not particularly complicated to make. >> over the next few months the two men start quietly gathering more components, including racing fuel, explosive charges, and 544 blasting caps they steal from a quarry in marion, kansas. then that december mcveigh and michael fortier go to oklahoma city to case the mahera building. >> we know for certain that mcveigh examined multiple federal buildings. he, in particular, scouted out the murrah building on multiple occasions. we know that because he took michael fortier directly to the murrah building and said after his examination of all the
potential targets, this is the one he was going to hit. >> mcveigh picks april 19th as the date. known as patriots day, it's reveered by many in the right wing anti-government movement. >> by april 1 you have the first shots fired at lexington and american revolution. on that day waco occurs in 1993 and then two years later mcveigh blows up his truck bomb in front of the murrah building. >> at some point fortier decides to not take part in the bombing. in a later plea bargain he will agree to testify against his co-conspirators.
in march 1995 mcveigh creates a fake driver's license with the name robert d.klimg and a berth day of april 19, 1972. on april 14th mcveigh buys the yellow 1977 mercury marquee from a used car dealer in junction city, kansas. the next day mcveigh reserves the ryder truck from elliott's body shop, using the robert d.kling alias. on april 16th, mcveigh and nichols drive the mercury to oklahoma city. mcveigh parks it several blocks away from the murrah building. he removes the license plates from the car and leaves a note. not objecteded. please do not tow. will move by april 23rd. needs battery and cable. two days later mcveigh and nichols rendezvous at geary state lake park where they assemble the bomb in the truck. >> the ammonium night rate and fuel would have been mixed in some barrels. 55 gallon plastic barrel. those barrels were then likely connected with this detonating cord which led to the boosters. then ultimately that detonating cord would have come together
where the detonators or blasting caps were. >> but at the last minute terry nichols, like michael fortier bails out. >> as time grew near to the time of the bombing, nichols got cold feet. he decided he didn't want to do that. he decided that was going too far. mcveigh screamed at him, threatened him, may have threatened to kill him. >> on the morning of april 1th mcveigh now on his own drives the ryder truck into oklahoma city. at 8:57 a.m. security cameras at the regency tower apartment building a few blocks west of the murrah building catch the ryder truck parked across the street. investigators surmise this is when mcveigh lights the first fuse. a few minutes later mcveigh moves the truck up, lights the second fuse, and parks on the north side of the murrah building. he then exits the truck and
begins walking rapidly to the yellow mercury parked four blocks away. at the federal building the work day is starting. hundreds of people are already inside. sfwloop an explosion in downtown. >> about one-third of the building has been blown away. >> half of the federal building is gone. >> mcveigh is only two blocks away when the bomb detonates. but he makes it to the getaway car and heads north on interstate 35. he is soob stopped for driving a vehicle without tags. on the back is a handwritten note. tnt at $5 a stick. need more.
>> there is no question in my mind that timothy mcveigh wanted to get caught, wanted to become a martyr. wanted the u.s. government to ebbing cute him. he left a trail of bread crumbs for the federal agents. he was seeking the deluxe suicide by cop execution package. uhh, it's my geico insurance id card, sir. it's digital, uh, pretty cool right? maybe. you know why i pulled you over today? because i'm a pig driving a convertible? tail light's out.. fix it. digital insurance id cards. just a click away with the geico mobile app.
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>> as nearly 2 5shgs had been news people again to settle in for the trial, outside the federal courthouse, so is the city of denver. >> during his trial, attorney general think mcveigh does not deny that he set the truck bomb. he instructs his lawyers to use a necessity defense. that he acted in self-defense against an oppressive federal government. >> mcveigh looked at the federal trial as a multi-million dollar soapbox for his anti-government views. that he felt he had no choice
but to blow up a building and kill 168 people. >> is everything still all right? >> no. >> no complaints? >> so it's a situation here that's a lot better than it was -- >> day and night. >> in his distorted world view, his actions were a justifiable response to what he considered violence perpetrated by the government against his own people. >> but defense attorney steven jones knew a necessity case was unwinnable, so he choose a different course. arguing that mcveigh was only part of a much larger conspiracy. >> the greatest mystery is who else besides tim mcveigh, terry nichols, and michael fortier that were involved because they were most assuredly others. >> most of it centered on the man -- known as john doe number two, the description did not fit either terry nichols or michael fortier. investigators concluded that john doe number two never existed. >> we found a gentleman that had been in there that generally fit the description of john doe number two, but it turned out it had been on a different day. he had been in there with a
friend that had rented a ryder truck, so we now realized that it was a misidentification of people transposing two different events and putting two different occurrences together. >> they swore to us over and over again that there was no john doe number two. no one was with him on the day of the bombing. the biggest misconception out there about the oklahoma city bombing in my view is this was something that sprang from the brain of timothy mcveigh, was masterminded by timothy mcveigh and substantially carried out by timothy mcveigh with a little bit of help from terry nichols. >> if there were other people
involved with the bombing, who were they? some believe there may have been a connection between mcveigh and elehim city, a christian identity community in oklahoma about 170 miles from oklahoma city near the arkansas border. >> it's essentially a religion that says that white angelo sackson americans are the true children of israel and jews are subhuman, essentially, and black people are not even human at all. >> during the early 1990s a number of far right extremists have reportedly spent time in elohim city. >> this was an interesting time.
you had a number of anti-government groups that were taking shape arming themselves, building compounds throughout the country, establishing their own laws, really setting themselves apart from mainstream cities and locations on purpose and believing then that not only people of other faiths or ethnicities or nationalalities were the enemy, but that the united states government was the biggest enemy. >> the question that reoccurs was what was the connection between tim mcveigh and elohim city. tim mcveigh said he never went there. there are people, however, who claim to have seen mcveigh at elohim city, and probably the strongest evidence that he was there is a ticket he received from an arkansas highway patrolman about four miles into arkansas from oklahoma on the road that takes you straight to elohim city. if he wasn't there, where was he? >> attorney general think mcveigh made some calls to elohim city. he drove near the area we know, but beyond that, any connection to elohim city or the notion that there were others involved is speculation heaped on top of speculation.
>> even assumes others were involved, why would mcveigh so strongly insist that he acted alone? i believe the only ones that actually knew what they were working on were the three men that were punished by the government. mcveigh, fortier and nichols. two years and 44 days after the worst terrorist attack on united states soil, a verdict has been rendered in the bombing trial of timothy mcveigh. >> on june 2nd, 1997, timothy mcveigh is found guilty on all 11 counts of murder and conspiracy. he is sentenced to death. >> outside the courthouse in
denver, tears, smiles and all emotions in between. >> later that year on december 24th, terry nichols is also convicted. he is currently searching life at the federal super max prison in colorado. for cooperating michael fortier receives a 12-year sentence. he is now part of the witness protection program. >> people are going to remember timothy mcveigh as a murderer, not a martyr. >> on june 11th, 2001, timothy mcveigh is put to death at the federal correctional complex in indiana. >> timothy mcveigh has been executed by lethal injection. >> it is the first federal execution in 38 years. >> mcveigh even at the point he was being executed never flinched, never changed his mind, never expressed regret, but right to the point of his
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>> just over a month after the oklahoma city bombing, what was left of the murrah federal building was demolished. today the site is home to the oklahoma city national memorial and museum. in addition to a reflecting pool, there is a field of empty chairs. 168 hand crafted sculptures that represent the victims. >> the memorial is a very special place. i think it really is a tribute to those who were killed and those who survived and those changed forever. >> it's just a positive thing that came out of a negative situation that we want people not to forget but realize if a bad thing happens, you can get
through it. >> claudia and jim denny's children, brandon and rebecca, were two of six kids in the daycare center who survived the blast. >> rebecca was in the hospital for ten days, released in pretty decent shape. she looked horrible, but she was in pretty good shape. >> brandon in 1995 spent 126 days hospitalized. the first 45 days he had four major brain surgeries. they could not tell me for 35 days if brandon could live. they informed us that if he did survive, he would more than likely never walk or talk again, but we have a young man who is now 21 years old, and he is a walking talking example of what miracles are all about. >> the oklahoma city bombing remains the worst domestic terrorist act in american
history. it changed the country in ways that are still being felt. >> people forget how different the world was when the bombing happened, and i think it shattered across the world people's feelings of safety and security because if it can happen in oklahoma city, it can happen anywhere. if it can happen to me, it can happen to anyone. >> we became a more cautious side. barriers went up around federal buildings. you have more security. the seeds of homeland security were actually planted by timothy mcveigh. >> there were other changes as well. the attack led to significant engineering improvements that allowed buildings to better with stand excessive forces, whether manmade or natural. legislation passed in the wake of the disaster that has given greater voice to the victims and families left behind by attacks like the oklahoma city bombing.
>> timothy mcveigh believed that he was going call his people to rise up and rebell against the government. this was going to be the start of the revolution. what happened was the tone. you saw a community in total support of its law enforcement, of its firemen, of its government. it shows that when we put our hearts and our minds together, we can make something good happen out of something terribl terrible. s continue to -- the tragic bombing that killed three and injured 250 at the 2013 boston marathon is a stark example. by coincidence it happened on
patriots day. virtually 18 years to the day after attorney general think mcveigh attacked oklahoma city. she was young. she was beautiful. and approximate she was in big trouble. >> the 20-year-old from seattle sits in this italian jail, a prime suspect in the mysterious death of her roommate. >> this was the ugly american on steroids. >> is amanda knocks a whore or a saint. >> i was sexually active. i was not sexually deviant. >> was she guilty, in fact, or just in the press? >> the newspapers had this fabulous sry